Let us introduce our finalists, battling for the title in the Championship 2023!
Championship race: Malmö, May 6, 2023
Artjoms is an OCR athlete from Latvia. Since the age of 13, Artjoms has been engaged in orienteering, which is his main background. Artjoms became interested in OCR 6 years ago, but only in the last year Artjoms focused on OCR on a much more serious level, building an OCR track near his house and starting to lead trainings. The biggest achievements in OCR competitions are the 2022 Toughest podiums.
Anette is born in 1988 and come from Oslo. She was a footballplayer in the norwegian top division until a kneeinjury forced her to quit. She was told that she could never run again, but she proved the doctors wrong!
Her first Toughest race was Oslo in 2017, as a qualifier. She won the qualifier heat and was upgraded for elite in 2018. Since 2018 she has been traning hard to be a better OCR-runner. She has collected 4 podiums in Toughest. First win was in Gøteborg 2022.
Hungry for more!
Vanja started her OCR journey back in 2019 and fell head over heels in love with the sport, the excitement it triggers and the various ways it’s challenging her as an athlete. Vanja is a former gymnast since the age of four and throughout her years as an active gymnast she has been competing at both Swedish-, Nordic- and European championships.
Jørgen is an experienced OCR athlete with great passion for the sport. Balancing work, family life, and engagement in kids sports help to focus his training on what really matters. Over years he has focused on strengthening his strengths and limit the weak spots which has been the main driver of the progress.
Jørgen is since 2019 undefeated in the local Norwegian OCRaces and in the fall of 19 he claimed 2nd in age group in the OCR WC in London. In 2022 he was part of the Norwegian team that ended 6th in the OCR EC and he also won the Tough Viking Nordic Series the same year.
In 2013 Andreas started running and that is still where the majority of training and competing hours goes to.
After joining the club Team Kroppslabbet 2020 he found bouldering and it was quickly added to the weekly workout schedule.
In 2022 Andreas attended his first OCR-race and realized that the combination of running and climbing was very satisfying. Since that race, his focus has been and will be on OCR.
Jens is a late bloomer that took his first running steps about five years ago at 36 years of age, after doing some crazy challenge called "OCR" (Toughest Göteborg) with his brother and sister. After that everything changed and Jens started running and doing OCR specific training on a regular basis.
Today he is training seven days a week and has several successful achievements behind him in the recent years, of which two 3:rd places in the OCR National Championships 2021 & 2022 and he is ranked as the third best Swedish OCR athlete in the official OCR rankning list.
Sara grew up with orienteering and has competed quite a lot in that sport. She has always liked running and trains a lot to become a faster runner. Sara ran her first ocr race in 2019 and after that she started training with like minded people at Kroppslabbet in Lidköping to get better at ocr. She qualified for Toughest elite in Malmö 2022 and made her first elite start in Lida, Stockholm, where she finished 2nd.
Espen Berget is a former cross country skier who has a strong background in endurance sports. Throughout his life, he has been dedicated to pushing his physical limits and testing his endurance through various training and competition. In 2020, Berget decided to branch out into the world of Obstacle Course Racing (OCR) and began competing in various events. Despite being new to the sport, Berget quickly made a name for himself, impressing audiences with his raw athleticism and endurance.
In 2021, Berget decided to fully commit to OCR and focus on this sport exclusively. He has since dedicated himself to training and competing in OCR events, and has become a formidable competitor in the sport. Berget's background in cross country skiing gives him a unique advantage in OCR, as the sport requires a high level of endurance, strength, and agility. Berget's training and experience in cross country skiing have prepared him well for the demands of OCR, and he is able to tackle even the toughest obstacles with ease.
Berget is known for his dedication and perseverance, as well as his ability to push through even the most challenging obstacles. His drive and determination have earned him the respect of his peers, and he is considered to be one of the top competitors in the sport of OCR. Berget's commitment to the sport of OCR is undeniable, and he is expected to continue to make a name for himself in the world of obstacle course racing in the years to come.
Karin ran her first Toughest race in Malmö back in 2016 and got hooked right away. After completing her first race a passion was awakened for both running and weightliftning. The following years it has been one challengning but also life-changing journey to reach the Elite starting field.
Today lifting heavy barbells and running long distances is not something she can live without. Of course a regular visit to Toughest LAB to practice her favourite obstacle flying monkey or salmon ladder is a must.
Alexander ran his first Toughest in 2017, just for fun. During the competition he saw you can compete in the sport at a higher level and he set up this goal for him which he has been training for ever since.
Time goes and he figured out early that he must improve his running skills. He started to run longer runs and often.
Today is the running his biggest strength in OCR. The best Toughest results he has is 4th in Stockholm 2022 and 7th in Malmö 2022.
Nikolai is an OCR-athlete who repressent Midgard Hinderløpsklubb and Velledalen IL. He used to play football where he was an expert in winning the ball before he gave it away again. He loves sports, competitions and Rocky Balboa. He started competing in Toughest elite as a wild card athlete in 2018 and has been a part of the elite group since then. His best result is 9th place from Malmö 2022.
Pontus was introduced to OCR during his years serving in the Swedish Armed Forces and immediately fell in love with the sport.
He has always preferred longer courses over shorter ones, courses with muddy trails rather than dry tarmac and courses with lots of obstacles over courses with lots of running.
Today, having two children, his training is based around everyday exercise, mainly running to work and doing strength exercises whenever given the chance (your standard community playground often provide excellent OCR training for parents).
Winner of Backamo 12h challenge 2021, 4th place on the standard course of the 2021 Swedish OCR Championships, Winner of OCR24 Stockholm 2022, Winner of Backamo 20k 2022, 6th place on the standard course of the 2022 Swedish OCR Championships, 6th place on Toughest Gothenburg 2022.
Johanna is an ocr-runner who has been running ocr since 2014, participated in the World Championships 2019 and was in the elite 2022.
Before she started with OCR she did muaythai for 7 years, participating in the national team with several medals on international Championships.
She works as an personal trainer in Helsingborg and does a lot of crossfit for fun. On her sparetime she loves riding horses and spending time with family and friends.
Mathias discovered OCR at Toughest Malmö may 2018. The 3 friends from Skara shared an awesome experience together and heard about the elites. Mathias spent most free time on gym resistance training while ‘’recovering’’ at the nightclubs at this time. He now steadily built up a running routine benefitting from a background at the football field in his youth. Passionate about mountain sports Mathias will prepare in the north for the Toughest Championship Finale.
Martina is a multiple athlete. She is active in several sports. She has three horses, two eventing horses and one show jumper. She is also an active CrossFit athlete and of course an ocr-athlete and runner.
She has won both the Swedish championship and the Nordic Baltic championship in team two times and has won a bronze medal one time. She has competed individual in the Swedish championship seven times with a seventh place as her best. In show jumping she competes up to 140 classes.
She competes in CrossFit a couple of times per year in Intermidiate classes.
She has completed OCR-WC in London 2019 in both 3k and 15k. Her favorite ocr race is Toughest Oslo. Her best placement in this event is an eleventh place in the elite. Her best time in a Toughest race is 1 hour in Copenhagen and her goal is to beat that time.
Sebastian's first OCR was the Toughest premiere race in Malmö 2013. Then Ironman and Swedish classics took up some time until he started running OCR in 2017 again. He has run OCR WC and OCR EC twice and been in TOUGHEST ELITE since 2018.
Andreas started his athletic career by the age of five when he first started playing ice hockey. A few years later he also started playing football. But he always thought hockey was more fun. So at the age of 14 he ended his football career to just play hockey.
In 2014 he ran his first OCR race at toughest Köpenhamn as a fun event with his father and some friends. After that race he felt like he wanted to continue running OCR races. Now he has 16 Toughest medals in his bag and a few other race medals as well. This is his first year as an elit runner at toughest and he hopes for more to come.
In 2021 he started crossfit training witch he thinks is a great workout when you run OCR. He ended his hockey career last year to have more time with his other hobbys. But after playing hockey almost his entire life he has a great physique and can tackle every obstacle in his way.
Today Andreas is training crossfit a few times a week and is running OCR races in when ever he has a chance.
Jessie is a 37 year old woman from Norway, with no experience in endurance sports before starting OCR. She now thinks OCR is the most fun way to keep in shape, and she loves the positive environment in the OCR community. She also loves to join family races with her children. The joy of learning new skills and to conquer her fears, and seeing her children do the same, gives her great motivation.
immy has been focusing on competing in OCR since 2015. Even when his getting older obstacle racing is still what he loves to do and he finds that the training to become an ocr athlete is the perfect way to stay fit.
Anders was first introduced to OCR through his colleagues at work. At first he was not supposed to participate but due to illness he took over a starting place from one of the colleagues. With a modest result, due to the lack of running experience, Anders felt that there was room for improvement and set his first goal to be best at work. Each year small milestones were set to have something to work for. After a few years Anders entered his first OCR-race as an elite runner finishing at 4th place.
Anders has a background from basketball which he still performs but not on a competitive level. His biggest passion when growing up though has been skateboarding and snowboarding. In skateboarding Anders has competed in both local competitions and Swedish championships. The benefit of skateboarding in OCR has not probably been much except maybe balance and to endurance scratches and bruises. As the one time Anders dislocated his finger at the ramp, at Toughest Lida in 2019. After failing his first try Anders pulled back his finger into place and cleared the obstacle on the second try.
Thanks to OCR Anders have found running which is something he enjoys in all forms, from flat runs on asphalt to hilly runs in the woods. Except running OCR has opened doors that have made his training more creative and diverse which maintains the motivation and drive.
Kristoffer did his first OCR in 2015 and started to train and compete on a serious level in 2019. Since then, he has taken a few podiums, with his best result being 1st place in Toughest Oslo 2021. He doesn’t have any specific background from any sport. However, he has always been very active with a focus on running and bodyweight strength.